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Mindfulness and Depression

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By ticatatica
Words 10431
Pages 42
Behar. Res. Ther. Vol. 33. No. I. pp. 25-39. 1995

Pergamon

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HOW DOES COGNITIVE THERAPY PREVENT
DEPRESSIVE RELAPSE AND WHY SHOULD
ATTENTIONAL
CONTROL (MINDFULNESS) TRAINING
HELP?
J OHN D. TEASDALE, 1 ZINDEL SEGAL2 a n d J. MARK G. WILLIAMS3
' MRC Applied Psychology Unit, 15 Chaucer Road, Cambridge CB2 2EF, England,
2Clark Institute of Psychiatry, Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology, University of Toronto,
3Department of Psychology, University College of North Wales

(Received 12 November 1993; receivedfor publication 17 January 1994)
S ummary--There is encouraging evidence that structured psychological treatments for depression, in p articular cognitive therapy, can reduce subsequent relapse after the period of initial treatment has been completed. However, there is a continuing need for prophylactic psychological approaches that can be administered to recovered patients in euthymic mood. An information-processing analysis of depressive m aintenance and relapse is used to define the requirements for effective prevention, and to propose mechanisms through which cognitive therapy achieves its prophylactic effects. This analysis suggests that similar effects can be achieved using techniques of stress-reduction based on the skills of attentional control t aught in mindfulness meditation. An information-processing analysis is presented of mindfulness and mindlessness, and of their relevance to preventing depressive relapse. This analysis provides the basis for the development of Attentional Control Training, a new approach to preventing relapse that integrates features of cognitive therapy and mindfulness training and is applicable to recovered depressed patients.

INTRODUCTION

T he prevention...

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